FAQs relating to schools
FAQs relating to business
FAQs relating to schools
Business Partners can provide schools with support in a whole range of areas, such as:
working with school staff on skills development
problem solving in areas such as leadership, management and strategic planning
supporting the curriculum by offering vocational learning placements for pupils
supporting the development of skills in literacy and numeracy
helping you to navigate changes with your building structures or governance frameworks
The Business Class cluster - where 5-8 school-business partnerships in a locality commit to meet once a term - can also provide the opportunity for you to understand some of the challenges that your peers in other schools are facing and work together to overcome them
Of course. We would encourage you to mention the support that they currently offer you when you complete your Needs Assessment process so we can ensure that your new business partner’s support complements the support you already enjoy. As an alternative, you may wish to consider introducing these contacts to the Business Class programme. Many Business Class partnerships are born of existing relationships.
As part of the needs assessment and action planning phase of Business Class, we encourage Businesses and schools to commit to a three year partnership and BITC will support this relationship throughout its duration. If for any reason a business partner or school cannot continue its involvement in Business Class BITC will endeavour to find a replacement.
Yes. The Business Class programme encourages partnership working and provides opportunities for everyone involved in a local area to share innovate and evaluate best practice. We always consult the Local Authority before initiating Business Class in any particular localities.
The primary remit of Business Class partners is to provide schools with knowledge and skills support through some of the example activities mentioned above. However, as the partner relationship develops there may be the possibility for financial support, but this cannot be guaranteed and would be dependent on the individual decision of each separate partnership.
FAQs relating to businesses.
How is this different from other business education partnerships?
There are two unique features to Business Class:
The needs-assessment matrix – which we go through with the school to ensure that business support targeted to the areas of the school which most require it. The partners’ action plan also ensures that there is a clearly defined support structure in place and ensures termly objectives can be measured and monitored over a three year period.
The Cluster mechanism which enables 5-8 School/Businesses partnerships in a particular locality to be grouped together enabling them to meet on a termly basis to share best practice and pool resources across partner schools. We then enable great ideas to be shared between clusters – both locally and nationally – enabling Business Class to raise the game in terms of quality and impact across the UK.
We aim to ensure that at least 2/3 of our clusters are located in areas in the top 20% on the indices of multiple deprivation. Having determined our priority areas, we prioritise the secondary schools facing the greatest challenges in terms of GCSE results but are very happy to work with higher performing schools as well. We do not currently include private schools in clusters.
We aim to pilot primary engagement in one or two clusters but are focusing phase 1 of Business Class on secondary engagement.
The minimum price to run a cluster is £22,500p.a.
The minimum number of partnerships for a cluster to be viable is four, the maximum number is eight. We will aim to have at least five businesses in a cluster at a cost of £4,500 p.a per partnership over a 3 year period.
If you are not a member of Business in the Community the cost will be £5,400. Please note that VAT is payable on all prices.
We are also looking for national partners who will enjoy particular profile and access as a result of their engagement. National partners will support the start up costs for a cluster in one or more key locations for them and also sit on the National Education Leadership Team. Please contact Katy.Neep@bitc.org.uk if you would like more information.
We will work with Local Authorities to source partner schools and meet them to introduce them to the model and work through the needs assessment process. We will work with you to determine which of the areas identified by the school you are equipped to support and develop an action plan at a matching meeting with you and the school. We will then launch the cluster, involving local partners, the local authority and all the business class members, and host termly cluster meetings to review progress across the different partnerships and opportunities for collaboration.
We will also support you on a 1-1 basis, helping you to develop programmes with your school partner and signposting you to online and other support where we don’t have the capacity to support you ourselves.
We will showcase excellent practice further afield, fuelling learning between clusters and also using lessons learnt locally to shape and inform national policy and good practice.
The amount of time Businesses are required to offer their partnership will vary depending on the needs of the school and how they plan to work together. As this is a ‘whole school’ relationship, however, you should anticipate intensive 1-1 engagement (eg via a Governing Body) as well as mass engagement.
Typically we would expect each partner to be present at all termly Cluster meetings (three per year) and look to support at least one intervention per term. We also find that the most successful partnerships are those where there is a dedicated team member driving the programme.
As a business you can:
-help to create tomorrow’s competitive workforce by influencing the skills and knowledge of young people
-influence educational practice and outcomes and improve recruitment by establishing direct links from education into employment.
-enhance your reputation within the local community
-access creative development opportunities for your staff.
For Businesses engaged in more than one locality, the framework can enable more cohesion to schools-based activities and help inform the clusters across the country.
This will depend on the priorities identified by your partner school but will focus around 4 key areas:
Leadership and Governance
Enterprise and Employability
The length of time it takes to establish a partnership can vary, but we have found that typically it can take anywhere between 3-6 months before activity and delivery can commence.
Yes - in fact many businesses with longstanding programmes have chosen to join Business Class in the belief that it may help refresh existing partnerships, enable them to access new ones and also provide a platform to share good practice further afield.
You are very welcome to work with other local schools outside of the cluster and we would encourage that you introduce them to the benefits of the Business Class approach where possible.